China Train Baggage Allowance and Transportation
Carry-on Baggage Allowance
Child (including those traveling for free): ≤10 kg (22 pounds)
Diplomat: ≤35 kg (77 pounds)
On normal trains: ≤160 cm (63 inches) by length+width+height per luggage
Rod-shaped items: ≤200 cm (79 inches)
1. The above baggage restrictions are not applicable to wheelchairs, which is not counted in the baggage allowance and can be brought onboard for free.
2. In fact, railway staff does not actually weigh or measure baggage. Generally, most baggage can be taken into carriages if they are not extremely large or heavy, or containing prohibited items or more than allowed restricted items. If getting stuck at the luggage check, consign the extra items by China railway consignment service.
bullet trains, or under the tables or seats on normal types.
In sleeper carriages, luggage racks are usually inside the compartments except the hard sleepers, whose racks are above the aisles outside the compartments. As well, there is extra luggage space under the lower berths or tables.
Things That Cannot be Brought onto China Trains
2. Bicycles, including foldable bicycles;
3. Items that do not smell well: durian, stinky tofu…
4. Toxics: pesticide, rat poison, infectious pathogen…
5. Corrosives: sulphuric acid, hydrochloric acid, mercury…
6. Sharp and dangerous objects: knives including kitchen knives, table knives and fruit knives; scissors; dagger; axes; hammers…
7. Explosives and Combustibles: fireworks, firecrackers, medical and industrial alcohol as well as drinking alcohol in loose packing, decoration paint, gasoline, kerosene, diesel oil, bananas water…
8. Weaponry and police arms: guns, including toy guns giving off “bullets”, tear gas guns, fire fighting guns, and nail guns; bullets; gunpowder; bombs; grenades; signal flare; defibrillator; police batons; bows; arrows…
9. Magnetic material that may influence the running signal;
10. Radioactive materials: uranium, plutonium…
2. Matches: at most 2 small boxes
3. Drinking alcohol: at most 6 bottles (500 ml or 17.6 fl oz in each bottle) with 50% or less vol and up to 2 bottles if over 50% vol. The bottles must be unpacked.
4. Cigarettes: at most 50 cartons
5. Nail polisher, hair dye, deluster: at most 20ml (0.7 fl oz)
6. Aerosol spray cans containing hairspray, hair gel, styling mousse, insecticide and air freshener...: at most 120 ml (4.2 fl oz)
Luggage Porters – Red Cap Luggage Service
Luggage porters help passengers to transport their luggage from waiting rooms to the platforms or from platforms to the station exits. As they usually wear a red cap, people nickname them “Red Cap”. A porter usually collects eight to ten pieces of luggage and carries them on a trolley or a cart. The charge is CNY 10–20 for each piece.
Before check-in, the passengers who paid for this service can follow the porters to get to the platform and get on board prior to other passengers; upon your arrival at a station, the porters carry your luggage and guide your way to the exit.
Related Link: China Travel Tips
Checked Baggage via China Railway Consignment Service
If your baggage exceeds the allowed amount or you take special items not allowed on a China train, consign them before departure.
To consign your luggage, you are required to present your ticket and fill in a form which should include your name, address, phone number, and the weight or amount of the items. Do remember to wrap up those fragile items and electronic products, for they may be damaged during transportation.
The consignment fee is not included in the ticket price. It is charged based on the traveling distance, baggage weight and baggage types. But in general it is much cheaper than the delivery service. For instance, to consign a regular bike from Beijing to Shanghai, it costs about CNY50.
Limits on Checked Baggage
1. Each piece of checked baggage should be no more than 50 kg (110 pounds).
2. The minimum volume should be more than 0.01 cubic meter (0.01 cube yard).
3. Currency, securities, cultural relics, jewelry, important documents and other valuables are not allowed in checked baggage.
4. Weaponry, explosives, combustibles, corrosives, poisons and other dangerous materials are not allowed in consigned luggage.
Baggage Check onto High Speed Trains
Usually, your baggage is transported in the same train with you and can be collected upon your arrival. However, the bullet trains and some ordinary ones do not have a freight carriage, and your checked baggage will be transported by an earlier or later ordinary type. Also, the railway stations only operating those bullet types may not offer consignment service. Thus, we recommend you to check your luggage 2-3 days ahead of your departure, so you can claim it right upon arrival. If your luggage arrives earlier than you, the arrival station will keep it for three days for free; if it arrives later than you, the staff will notify you on its arrival.
Delivery Service by China Railway Express
China railway also provides parcel/delivery service which enables you to mail your personal items, such as clothesor a bike. For foreign passengers, you may need to deliver your heavy or special items to the next destination through this service during a multi-destination trip. The luggage may travel slower than by express delivery, but the charges are much cheaper.
Q: Can I take my bike onto China trains?
A: Generally, bikes are not allowed onboard. Passengers can use the consignment or delivery service to transport your bike to the destination. If you insist, you will need to dismantle and box the bicycle to take it onboard as a regular piece of luggage.
Q: Can I take my pet?
A: No. But the pet can be consigned as a checked luggage. The thing is it needs to be caged and consigned four hours prior to the departure time with quarantine and health certificates. This does not apply to guide gods, which can get onboard with required documents like its work permit and animal health immunization certificate.
Q: Where to put my wheelchair?
A: The coach no.5 on high speed trains usually has a special area to park your wheelchairs and you can recharge your electric wheelchairs for free there. One of the toilets in this coach is designed for the disabled. Besides, this coach is usually close to the platform lift to the arrival hall or waiting hall.
The normal types do not have a special area for wheelchairs. You are recommended to ask help from the staff and they will be glad to find you space and take care of you during the trip.